Title: God and Joseph

Purpose: To Understand God's Overall Plan and our Part in it

1.  Story seems to be about shattered expectations
2.  Big picture:  God’s promise (Gen 35:9-15)
	a.  Nation and company of nations from Israel
	b.  Land to his descendants

I.  (Gen 37:1-11) Joseph’s dreams
	A.  What does this have to do with God’s promise?
	B.  All we can see is a teenager with a pride problem
		1.  v.12-28 - Sent to check on brothers, they sell him
		2.  Reuben wanted to save him
	C.  Imagine what this must have been like
	D.  Did those dreams mean nothing?  Now he is a slave.

II.  (Gen 39:1-6) Joseph as a slave
	A.  He went from slave to overseer
	B.  Things have defenitely taken a turn for the better
		1.  v.7-10 - Joseph acted honorably with Potiphar’s wife
		2.  v.11-20 - Falsely accused and put in prison
	C.  What would be going through your mind now
	D.  What in the world is God up to?

III.  (Gen 39:20-23) Joseph as a prisoner
	A.  It would be easy to think God is not with him
		1.  Went from father’s favorite, to slave, to innocent prisoner
		2.  He literally lost everything
	B.  But the text says God was with Joseph.  
		1.  God must be up to something
		2.  40:1-23 - Story of Cupbearer and Baker’s dreams
		3.  Cupbearer left him in jail.
		4.  What is God up to?
	C.  Would you weep and curse at your fate if this were you?
	D.  Each major life change brought Joseph lower
		1.  I would shudder to think of what was next.
		2.  What could possibly be worse than prison?

IV.  Joseph has one final major life change coming
	A.  41:1-24 -Pharoah’s dreams
		1.  The cupbearer FINALLY remembers after two years!
		2.  v.16 Pharoah calls for Joseph & tells him the dreams
		3.  7 ugly, skinny cows (v.19) and healthy, fat cows
		4.  7 ears ears on single stalk, seven whithered
	B.  Joseph’s interpretation and advise (41:25-36)
	C.  (41:37-45) - Joseph made second only to Pharaoh!
		1.  From age 17 to age 30, he a slave and prisoner
		2.  God finally lifts him up
	D.  But wait, aren’t we losing track of the promise?

V.  Everything comes together in the ending of this story
	A.  42:1ff - Famine brings Joseph’s brother’s to Egypt, they BOW
		1.  There is so much drama in the reunion
		2.  Joseph plays with them, accuses them of spying
		3.  Holds Simeon hostage for Benjamin
		4.  Jacob’s reaction v.38
	B.  43:1ff - Famine forces them to return with Benjamin
		1.  Joseph has to go away, he weeps
		2.  They feast with Joseph
		3.  Joseph has cup put in Benjamin’s sack - retreives them
		4.  Tries to keep Benjamin, Judah offers self in his place
	C.  (45:4-9) - Joseph reveals himself to his brothers
		1.  No bitterness, no grudge
		2.  If this not happen, family would have starved to death
		3.  Joseph sends for his father and family
	D.  (46:2-4) - God speaks to Jacob and tells him to go to Egypt
		- God was keeping his promise all along

1.  What does this teach us about God?
	- God does not always let’s us in on the particulars of his plan.
2.  (Phil 4:11-12) - What is the “secret?”  Read verse 13.
3.  The secret is trust in God
	- He will do what he said he would do
	- He said he is coming back to get us, and he will
4.  Don’t know when
	a.  In the meantime, may become a slave
	b.  May be falsely accused and persecuted
	c.  Don’t give up on God, he is coming
5.  Are you ready?